Osho World Online Magazine :: October 2010 - Osho_Responsibility
Untitled Document
Main Story
    Love and Responsibility

    Duty or Responsibility
In Focus

The blame game and slave mentality
By Anand Bhagawati

By Swami Satya Vedant

The Ability to Respond
By Ma Prem Gitamo

Response Here and Now
By Lakshen Sucameli

The Four Letter Words: Duty, Work and Love
By Swami Chaitanya Keerti

Story of the Month
Special Feature
    By Sarjano
Care for the earth
    Cosmic Chemistry

    Solar Storm

    News Update

    Steps you can...

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    Sannyas Roundup By Ma Anand Bhagawati
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    The Last Resort...

    Osho Upaban, Pokhara, Nepal

    Mike Edwards dies in Accident

    And finally...
book serialization

    From Lemurs to Lamas
    Clay with a Soul

    Krishna Week celebrations
    Sit still, breathe!

    The real self and the false ego

    Media in Hindi
    Techniques to...
Book Intro
    Zen: The Quantum Leap From Mind To No-Mind
    Laugh Your Way to God
    Tantra by Mahasatvaa Ma Ananda Sarita
    Message from the Master

Main Story


If you can solve your own, that is already too much. Please never try to solve anybody else's problem; you will create a mess. You have not solved your own. Never do that. The mind has a tendency and a temptation to do it.

You ask: What is the relationship between love and responsibility? No relationship, because love is responsibility. But the word has to be understood well -- what it means.

I insist on the root meaning of the word. Responsibility means: ability to respond. It does not mean a duty.

Responsibility -- go to the root meaning of the word: it means to be responsive. Love is a response! When the other calls, you are ready. When the other invites, you enter the other. When the other is not inviting, you don't interfere, you don't trespass. When the other sings, you sing in response. When the other gives you her or his hand, you take it with deep response.

Responsibility means openness, readiness, to respond. Somebody is calling and you don't respond, you remain closed. Somebody wants to love you but you don't help, you don't co-operate; rather, you create barriers. If this is the thing you are doing -- and the majority of lovers go on doing this -- when the other calls you don't respond, then when you call the other does not respond. Because when the other calls you see that this would be a good ego enhancing thing -- not to respond. Then you feel your own master: nobody can push you, and nobody can pull you into something which you were not going into already; you don't follow anybody.

Comes your beloved -- and she is happy, and she would like to be in a deep silence with you, but you remain closed. Then when you call, there is no answer. Have you seen birds calling each other? That is responsibility. A cuckoo calls; there is silence; and then another cuckoo responds. By their sounds, by their song, they answer. They may be far away in farther away trees, then they start flying closer; they have responded. By and by they come to the same tree, then they are sitting together, loving.

When the other's being calls ready! -- be ready; respond with your totality. Don't be a miser -- that is the meaning of responsibility.

But in your sense love has no responsibility. The word has been corrupted, destroyed, poisoned. A mother says to the child, I am your mother, you have to be responsible for me. A husband says, I am your husband, and I work hard for you. You have to be responsible for me. A father says to the son, Don't be irresponsible! Whenever you do something always think of me. This is not responsibility, you have corrupted a beautiful word. It has become ugly. Responsibility has become almost synonymous with duty. And duty is an ugly word.

Love is beautiful; if you love your mother -- you love, but it cannot be a duty. If it is duty it is better not to love, because duty is not going to satisfy her. And if you are doing your duty because she is your mother and she has given birth to you, what can you do? -- you have to take care. When she is ill you have to sit by her side -- then all the time, if it is a duty, your mind is against her, you are feeling suffocated, you are feeling burdened, in a bondage, you would like to rebel and revolt. And if this mother dies, you may not say so to anybody, but you will feel relief.

What type of responsibility is this -- when the mother dies and the son feels a deep relief? Of course he cries and weeps -- of course; and it is not that he is showing others that he is crying and weeping -- in fact, if you had loved your mother there may have been no tears, but you have not loved your mother, now the opportunity is lost. You never loved your mother and now she is gone! Hence the tears, the so much weeping and crying -- it is pathological, it is not healthy. If you had really loved your mother then what is there to weep and cry about? She is gone!

A deep silence surrounds you. In that deep silence you start understanding death, you become aware of your own death. When your mother dies -- or your father dies -- it is an indication that you will have to die. Then you become involved with death. You try to understand it.

While she was alive she helped you to understand life. Now she is gone, she has opened another door -- the door of death, to look into: because she has gone and you will have to follow.

If you have loved a person, when the person is gone you don't feel relief -- and you don't cry, and you don't weep. In deep silence you accept the fact, the helplessness of it -- and the love continues, because love does not end with the body, love does not end with the mind, love goes on flowing.

No, don't ask what the relationship between love and responsibility is -- there is none. When there is no love, the question of responsibility comes in. When there is no love, you start talking about duty. When there is love, love itself is responsibility.

And, does loving another person mean trying to solve their problems as well as your own? No. Never try. That is trespassing. Accept the person as he is with all his problems -- that is love.

If he asks you, share your understanding, but don't try to change him.

Very difficult; because the mind is a manipulator. In the name of good, in the name of doing good, it tries to manipulate; it is a politician. A wife says, Because you are smoking I will have to fight with you; you have to change your smoking, this is not good, you are destroying your health -- and I have seen that a nagging wife destroys health more than any smoking. And the wife goes on nagging, and she says, It is because of your health -- I love you. And for thirty years she has been nagging.

Now they have been experimenting on nagging; and a very rare phenomenon has been revealed. They have tried it on the food that you eat: bread, butter, vegetables, fruit juice; they have put the fruit juice and the other food on a tray and the wife is nagging and screaming: it destroys the juice -- on the tray! The juice becomes toxic, poisonous. So just think what will be happening in the stomach, because on the tray everything is still non organic, dead in a way. The juice in a glass is destroyed, so what will be happening to the juice in the stomach? Because then it has become part of your life stream, it is more alive.

Nagging destroys life, health -- and your wife is nagging for your health because you are smoking. If she really loves you how can she nag? Impossible. How can she scream? She will simply love you, and she will love you so much and so deeply that the need for smoking will disappear.

If you love a person you accept the total person. With all the defects. Because those defects are a part of the person. But your love changes -- remember this: Love never tries to change, but it changes tremendously. If you can love that will bring a revolution, and it brings the revolution so silently that even the footsteps are not heard. Nobody ever becomes alert to what is happening -- everything happens so silently, as the buds open and flower and no noise is heard. Just like that.

And never try to change a person you love, because the very effort to change says that you love half, and the other half of the person is not accepted -- that is the meaning of trying to change, that you say: I love you but I don't love your nose. I love you, but I don't love your face. One very fat girl said to me that only one boy loves her, and he says, I love your soul but not your body.

But all lovers go on saying such things: that I love you but I don't -- I CAN'T love your smoking. I hate it! But that seems a rejection. And for the lover smoking is part of his being. He cannot help it. It is the way he is. Suddenly he shrinks, he is not accepted. You have poisoned a very beautiful thing like love for a very non essential thing like smoking. If you love, you simply love. If love brings change, it is okay. If it doesn't bring change -- that is also okay.
Tao: The Three Treasures, Vol-3, Chapter-8

Duty or Responsibility

Duty and responsibility are synonyms in the dictionary. but not in life. In life they are not only different, they are diametrically opposite. Duty is other-oriented, responsibility is self-oriented. When you say 'I have to do it', it is a duty. 'Because my mother is ill, I have to go and sit by her side.' Or, 'I have to take flowers to the hospital. I have to do it, she is my mother.' Duty is other-oriented: you don't have any responsibility. You are fulfilling a social formality -- because she is your mother; you don't love her. That's why I say that duty is a four-letter, dirty, word. If you love your mother, you will not say 'This is a duty.' If you love your mother, you will go to the hospital, you will take the flowers, you will serve your mother, you will be by her bedside, you will massage her feet, you will feel for her, but it will not be a duty -- it will be responsibility. You will respond out of your heart.

Responsibility means the capacity to respond. Your heart vibrates, you feel for her, you care for her; not that she is your mother -- that is irrelevant -- you love the woman. She is your mother -- or not, that is secondary -- but you love the woman, you love the woman as a person. It is a flowing from your heart. And you will not feel that you have obliged her, and you will not go advertising all around that you are such a duty-fulfilling son. You will not feel that you have done something. You have not done anything. What have you done? Just taking a few flowers to the mother who is ill and you feel that you have done a great obligation? That's why I say that duty is dirty. The very word is dirty: it is other-oriented.

Responsibility has a totally different dimension: you love, you care, you feel; it comes out of your feeling. Duty comes out of thinking that she is your mother -- 'that's why', 'therefore'; it is a syllogism, it is logical. You go somehow, dragging yourself, you would like to escape, but what can you do? Your respectability is at stake. What will people say? Your mother is ill and you are enjoying yourself in the club and you are dancing, and your mother is ill? No, your ego will be hurt. If you could avoid this mother without your respectability being affected and your ego being affected, you would like to avoid. You will go to the hospital and you will be in a hurry to rush away, you will find some reason. 'I have to go. because there is an appointment.' There may not be. You want to avoid this woman, you don't want to-be with her: even five minutes are too much. You don't love.

Duty I am against, but responsibility -- yes, I say that my sannyasins have to be tremendously responsible. And once you drop duty you are free to be responsible.

In my childhood my grandfather used to like his feet to be massaged and he would call anybody -- whosoever was passing. He was very old and he would say 'Will you massage my feet?'

Sometimes I would say yes and I would massage, and sometimes I would say no. He became intrigued. He said 'What is the matter? Sometimes you say yes and nobody massages my feet as lovingly as you do -- but sometimes you simply say no.'

I said 'Whenever it is a duty I say no. Whenever it is a responsibility, I do it.'

He said 'What is the difference?'

I said 'This is the difference. When I feel love, when I would like to massage your feet, then I do it. When I feel it is just a formality -- because you have asked and I have to do it -- my mind will not be here because the children are playing outside and they are inviting me... I will not be here at all, then I don't want to do it because that is ugly.' So sometimes it would happen that I had to say no to him when he wanted a massage, and sometimes I would simply go to him and ask 'Would you like a little massage? I am in the mood. I will really do a beautiful job. You allow me.'

Do whatsoever comes out of your feeling, out of your heart; never repress your heart. Never follow your mind because mind is a social byproduct, it is not your reality. Move out of your reality. Function out of your reality. Don't function out of principles, etiquette, patterns of behaviour, what Confucius calls 'gentlemanly'. Don't be a gentleman, be a man -- that's enough, be a woman -- -that's enough. And be truly a man, truly a woman. Sometimes you will feel like doing something; do, pour your heart in it, it will be a beautiful flowering. Sometimes you won't want to do, say so, be clear about it; there is no need to camouflage it.
Tao: The Pathless Path, Vol-1, Chapter-8

Osho World Online Magazine :: October 2010 - Osho_Responsibility
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